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" Proxy wars : reputation-building and transnational identities" (avec Marion Mercier et Benjamin Tremblay-Auger)
Abstract :
With a global security infrastructure that deters interstate wars, states establish a reputation of resolve by supporting rebellions abroad. Co-ethnicity, in particular, is used as a narrative by states who want to establish their international reputation : i) with more co-ethnic groups in neighboring countries, a state is more likely to support a given co-ethnic rebellion, and ii) ethnic groups whose potential foreign sponsor state count more co-ethnic groups in the neighboring countries benefit from higher political inclusion. The first relationship shows that states intentionally seek to build their reputation and the second result shows that such a strategy is effective. With a data set composed of 280,354 ethnic identity x sponsor state x target state x year observations, our empirical results lend credence to the reputation-building mechanism as a determinant of the support to rebellions abroad.